The Surprise Visit (5/21/12)

I was supposed to go for the lung nodule follow-up on May 16; however, this had to be rescheduled due to the resection surgery.  So Monday, May 21st was the new day for the follow-up scan.

Going to get the CT scan was the focus of the day. The chest, abdomen, and pelvis scan required that I not eat or drink and I had to drink the ready CAT prep liquid (not good). The scan was at 1:50 p.m. That meant I spent most of the day hungry and thinking about the scan, researching chemo, wondering if the nodule on my lung will be bigger or gone, and wondering if they will find lesions on my liver or if there are any other hidden tumors lurking inside me.

And when the CT scan was done, I felt sad and helpless. My blood has been drawn, the tests have been completed, and now again, I have to wait for the results. And the results are out of my control.

Around 5:30 p.m. dinner time rolled around. My step daughters cooked my favorite dinner (spaghetti) however, I had eaten shortly after the scan was completed (remember I didn’t eat all day), and I was not hungry. Instead of eating spaghetti dinner I wandered out back and built a fire in our fire pit. It was cloudy and cool and the fire was warm and relaxing. I was sitting by the fire wrapped up in my thoughts and reflections. The kids came out after finishing their dinner and sat with me a bit. We chatted about their current challenges and then they all decided to take a bike ride and left me to my own reflections.

Monday night golf was surprisingly not something that crossed my mind that day. This was surprising because it was Monday and not being able to play on my Monday night league because of this cancer was one of the things that really saddened me.

I have played golf with the same partner for the last 15 years and with the same Monday night league for the last ten years. We are not the best golfers. We have won our league a few times over the 15 years, but usually we end up 3rd, 4th, or 5th. We play to play and to have fun. Our entire league (all 20 people) is of similar mindset and mostly play for fun.  With the resection surgery I had to find a sub for at least six weeks. Now facing chemo I realize that I may not be able to play this season at all. And I miss playing already. This makes me angry and sad.

My phone rang around 8 p.m. and my friend Travis was on the phone and wanted to know what I was doing and if he could come over. I told him I had built a fire, that I had a few beers in the fridge, and he was more than welcome to join me. Travis and Terry arrived, then Louie and Maynard.

My golf buddies from the Monday night league decided to come over for the 19th hole. I was surprised that I didn’t even remember that it was Monday night. How could I forget?

We all sat around the fire, we laughed and talked. My wife brought out hot dogs, chips, and peanuts. They grilled dogs and enjoyed a little post-golf snack. We reminisced about golf, hunting trips, and fishing. We talked about cancer, the tests, and the possibility of chemo. And we discussed ideas for the next Monday night post-golf gathering (they want chili).

This impromptu gathering caught me off guard. I was touched. It truly made my day. I am lucky to have friends who I have known for so many years and have experienced so many things together with them!

I still had to wait for the results from the CT scan and blood lab tests. But waiting was not so bad on that Monday night as it was spent with friends who cared to come and cheer me up; without even knowing how much it was needed.



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